Jim Reeves – Gentleman Jim (1963)

FrontCover1James Travis Reeves (August 20, 1923 – July 31, 1964) was an American country and popular music singer-songwriter. With records charting from the 1950s to the 1980s, he became well known as a practitioner of the Nashville sound (a mixture of older country-style music with elements of popular music). Known as “Gentleman Jim”, his songs continued to chart for years after his death. Reeves died in the crash of his private airplane. He is a member of both the Country Music and Texas Country Music Halls of Fame. /by wikipedia)

Sweet memories:
My dad had this LP record back in the early 60’s and I recall watching my parents dance to his music. As I got older I fell in love with his music and at one time I owned over 100 of his LP’s… I only have a handful left as I had to let my collection go. But this album was my all time favorite as it has my all time favorite love song… “I’d Fight the World.”  (by Ron G.)

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Personnel:
Willy Ackerman (drums)neer
Floyd Cramer (piano)
Marvin Hughes (vibraphone)
Leo Jackson (lead guitar)
Jim Reeves )vocals)
Velma Smith (guitar)
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background vocals:
The Anita Kerr Singers

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Tracklist:
01. Memories Are Made Of This (Miller/Dehr/Gilkyson) 2.14
02. Roses Are Red (My Love) (Byron/Evans) 2.47
03. After Loving You (Miller) 1.55
04.  Stand In (Robertson/Blair) 2.09
05.  Waltzing On Top Of The World (Courtney) 2.21
06. When You Are Gone (Manuel/Reeves) 2.52
07.  Just Out Of Reach (Stewart) 2.46
08.  I Love You Because (Payne) 2.42
09. I’d Fight The World (Cochran/Allison) 2,48
10. The One That Got Away (Killen/Reeves) 2.29
11. Once Upon A Time (Killen/Reeves) 2.11
12. I Never Pass There Anymore (Howard) 2.19

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Shannon McNally – Small Town Talk (Songs Of Bobby Charles) (2013)

FrontCover1Here´s a wonderful tribute album to the great Bobby Charles:

Robert Charles Guidry (February 21, 1938 – January 14, 2010), known as Bobby Charles, was an American singer-songwriter.

An ethnic Cajun, Charles was born in Abbeville, Louisiana, and grew up listening to Cajun music and the country and western music of Hank Williams. At the age of 15, he heard a performance by Fats Domino, an event that “changed my life forever,” he recalled.

Charles helped to pioneer the south Louisiana musical genre known as swamp pop. His compositions include the hits “See You Later, Alligator”, which he initially recorded himself as “Later Alligator”, but which is best known from the cover version by Bill Haley & His Comets, and “Walking to New Orleans” and “It Keeps Rainin'”, written for Fats Domino.

“(I Don’t Know Why) But I Do” was an early 1960s song that Charles composed, which Clarence “Frogman” Henry had a major hit with, and which was on the soundtrack of the 1994 film Forrest Gump. His composition “Why Are People Like That?” was on the soundtrack of the 1998 film Home Fries.

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Because of his south Louisiana–influenced rhythm and blues vocal style, Charles has sometimes been thought to be black, when in fact he was white.

Charles was invited to play with the Band at their November 26, 1976, farewell concert, The Last Waltz, at the Winterland Ballroom in San Francisco. In the concert, Charles played “Down South in New Orleans”, with the help of Dr. John and the Band. That song was recorded and released as part of the triple-LP The Last Waltz box set. The performance was also captured on film by director Martin Scorsese, but did not appear in the final, released theatrical version. Charles did, however, appear briefly in a segment of the released film—in the concert’s final song, “I Shall Be Released”. In that segment, his image is largely blocked from view during the performance. That song, sung by Bob Dylan and pianist Richard Manuel, featured backup vocals from the entire ensemble, including Charles.

He co-wrote the song “Small Town Talk” with Rick Danko of the Band. “Promises, Promises (The Truth Will Set You Free)” was co-written with Willie Nelson.

TheLastWaltz

Charles continued to compose and record (he was based out of Woodstock, New York, for a time) and in the 1990s he recorded a duet of “Walking to New Orleans” with Domino.

In September 2007, the Louisiana Music Hall of Fame honored Charles for his contributions to Louisiana music with an induction.
Death

Charles collapsed in his home near Abbeville and died on January 14, 2010. (by wikipedia)

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I don’t like to use the word perfection around music, because life’s beauty is often expressed with imperfection. But for lack of a better vocabulary I have to say this is about as perfect a record as I’ve ever heard. If you enjoy the New Orleans sound – casual and laid-back but at the same time never too casual in terms of musicianship – you may agree with me that this rates album of the year. The songs of Bobby Charles are extraordinary and his mastery has been celebrated for decades. The arrangements with production from Dr. John and Shannon McNally are spot-on, playful, intricate without being obvious, and ideal for these tunes.

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The musicianship, well it doesn’t get any better. Shannon McNally contributes a voice and interpretative gift that was born to sing these songs. Once in a blue moon somebody will make a record that perfectly encapsulates a mood and a feeling, where all the songs stack up just right. I’m thinking, for example, of Dylan’s Blood on the Tracks, Miles Davis’ Kind of Blue, the Stones Exile on Main Street. Small Town Talk does that as well as any record I’ve ever heard – including those just mentioned. This record won’t be for everyone’s taste, mind you. But for those with whom it resonates it might just break your heart, make you laugh, blow your mind, and touch your soul. They say the way to tell if a pot of rice is cooked is to test one grain. So I suggest you listen to a tune or two off of this album. If you like what you discover, you’ll likely love this record. (by Constant Traveler)

In spite of not attaining his initial goal of becoming a successful singer Bobby Charles leaves behind a really rich legacy of timeless pop songs which are still being recorded, and performed today. As a testament to this legacy, have a listen to Shannon McNally’s tribute album, Small Town Talk: (Songs of Bobby Charles) … you’ll love it!

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Personnel:
David Barard (bass)
Alonzo Bowens (saxophone)
Natalia Cascante (violin)
Herman V. Ernest III (drums, percussion)
John Fohl (guitar)
Helen Gillet (cello)
Harry Hardin (violin)
Lauren Lemmler (viola)
Shannon McNally (vocals, guitar on 06.)
Charlie Miller (flute, trumpet)
Jason Mingledorff (saxophone)
Mac Rebennack (keyboards, background vocals)
Ken “Afro” Williams (percussion)
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Luther Dickinson (guitar on 02.)
Vince Gill (vocals on 03., guiar on 10.)
Will Sexton (guitar on 06.)
Derek Trucks (guitar on 05.)
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The Lower 911 Band (background vocals)

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Tracklist:
01. Street People (Charles) 3.15
02. Can’t Pin A Color (Charles) 3.17
03. String Of Hearts (Charles) 3.53
04. I Spend All My Money (Charles) 2.55
05. Cowboys And Indians (Charles) 4.07
06. Homemade Songs (Charles) 4.11
07. Long Face (Charles) 3.24
08. Small Town Talk (Charles/Danko) 4.07
09. I Don’t Want To Know (Charles) 4.03
10. But I Do (Charles/Gayten) 4.08
11. Love In The Worst Degree (Charles) 3.07
12. Save Me Jesus (Charles) 3.38
13. Smile (So Glad) (Charles) 3.18
14. I Must Be In A Good Place Now (Charles) 3.37

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Robert Charles Guidry (February 21, 1938 – January 14, 2010)

Willie Nelson – Stardust (1978)

FrontCover1Stardust is the 23rd studio album by Willie Nelson that spans the genres of pop, jazz, and country music. Its ten songs consist entirely of pop standards that Nelson picked from among his favorites. Nelson asked Booker T. Jones, who was his neighbor in Malibu at the time, to arrange a version of “Moonlight in Vermont”. Impressed with Jones’s work, Nelson asked him to produce the entire album. Nelson’s decision to record such well-known tracks was controversial among Columbia executives because he had distinguished himself in the outlaw country genre. Recording of the album took only ten days.

Released in April, Stardust was met with high sales and near-universal positive reviews. It peaked at number one in Billboard’s Top Country Albums and number thirty in the Billboard 200. Meanwhile, it charted at number one in Canadian RPM’s Country Albums and number twenty-eight in RPM’s Top Albums. The singles “Blue Skies” and “All of Me” peaked respectively at numbers one and three in Billboard’s Hot Country Singles.

In 1979, Nelson won a Grammy Award for Best Male Country Vocal Performance for the song “Georgia on My Mind”. Stardust was on the Billboard’s Country Album charts for ten years—from its release until 1988. The album also reached number one in New WillieNelsonZealand and number five in Australia in 1980. In 2003, the album was ranked number 257 on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the 500 greatest albums of all time. It was originally certified platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America in December 1978. In 1984, when it was certified triple platinum, Nelson was the highest-grossing concert act in the United States. In 2002, the album was certified quintuple platinum, and it was later inducted in the Grammy Hall of Fame class of 2015. (by wikipedia)

At the height of outlaw country, Willie Nelson pulled off perhaps the riskiest move of the entire bunch. He set aside originals, country, and folk and recorded Stardust, a collection of pop standards produced by Booker T. Jones. Well, it’s not entirely accurate to say that he put away country and folk, since these are highly idiosyncratic interpretations of “Georgia on My Mind,” “All of Me,” “Moonlight in Vermont,” and “Don’t Get Around Much Anymore,” blending pop, country, jazz, and folk in equal measures. It’s not that Willie makes these songs his own, it’s that he reimagines these songs in a way that nobody else could, and with his trusty touring band, he makes these versions indelible.

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It may be strange to think that this album, containing no originals from one of America’s greatest songwriters, is what made him a star, and it continues to be one of his most beloved records, but it’s appropriate, actually. Stardust showcases Nelson’s skills as a musician and his entire aesthetic — where there is nothing separating classic American musical forms, it can all be played together — perhaps better than any other album, which is why it was a sensation upon its release and grows stronger with each passing year. (by Stephen Thomas Erlewine)

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Personnel:
Paul English (drums)
Chris Ethridge (bass)
Booker T. Jones (keyboards)
Rex Ludwick (drums)
Bobbie Nelson (piano)
Willie Nelson (vocals, guitar)
Jody Payne (guitar)
Mickey Raphael (harmonica)
Bee Spears (bass)

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Tracklist:
01. “Stardust (Carmichael/Parish) 3.53
02. Georgia On My Mind (Carmichael/Gorrell) 4.20
03. Blue Skies (Berlin) 3.34
04. All Of Me (Simons/Marks) 3.54
05. Unchained Melody (North/Zaret) 3.50
06. September Song (Weill/Anderson) 4-35
07. On The Sunny Side Of The Street (McHugh/Fields) 2.36
08. Moonlight In Vermont (Suessdorf/Blackburn) 3.25
09. Don’t Get Around Much Anymore (Ellington/Russell) 2.33
10. Someone To Watch Over Me (G.Gershwin/I.Gershwin) 4.03
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11. Scarlet Ribbons (Danzig/Segal) 4.30
12. I Can See Clearly Now (Nash)  4.18

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Sammy Davis Jr. – Closest Of Friends (1982)

FrontCover1Sammy Davis Jr. goes Country:

In 1982, Sammy Davis, Jr. made the musical move to Nashville. Perhaps the last place you would expect the diminutive wonder to turn up, but he cut ten songs there for the Applause label and the Closest of Friends album was the result. The songs assembled for Davis to sing come from some of the finest writers the town had to offer (“Oh Lonesome Me” by Don Gibson, “Come Sundown” and “Please Don’t Tell Me How the Story Ends” by Kris Kristofferson, “Smoke Smoke Smoke (That Cigarette)” by Tex Williams and Merle Travis) and while the aging Sammy did what he could vocally, the wooden arrangements and pedestrian playing really bring the album down. The best of the songs, like Sammy’s light bounce through “Hey, Won’t You Play (Another Somebody Done Somebody Wrong Song)” and his knowing take on “Smoke Smoke Smoke (That Cigarette)” (which contains the cruelly foreshadowing lyric “I’ve smoked ’em all my life and I ain’t dead yet”) are miles away from his best work and have only the slightest glimmer of what made Davis so spectacular in his prime. Only a true Davis fanatic would ever want to hear these songs. It was one of his last forays into a recording studio and should probably just be forgotten. Unfortunately, it is one of the few Davis sessions that turns up time and time again on cheap reissue labels, often with mis-leading titles and cover shots. (by Tim Sendra)

But:

You normally wouldn’t think of Country music and Sammy Davis Jr going together, but they do! As a long time country fan, I recommend this album. He does justice to the fine selection of songs and actually went on Hee Haw to promote it! Jimmy Capps of the Grand Ole Opry staff band plays guitar along with Billy Sanford. The album was produced by Larry Butler. (by Hank Will)

This is a very sentimental trip … including two songs by the great Kris Kristofferson !

Alternate front+back cover from Venezuela:
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Personnel:
Larry Butler (piano)
James Capps (guitar)
Jerry Carrigan (drums)
Steve Chapman (guitar)
Sammy Davis Jr. (vocals)
Ray Edenton (guitar)
Bob Moore (bass)
Leon Rhodes (bass)
Hargus Robbins (piano)
Billy Sanford (guitar)
Jerry Shook (guitar)
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Sheldon Kurland Strings
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background vocals:
James Cason – Don Gant – Diane Fidwell – Bergen White – Lisa Silver – Sheryln Hoffman

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Tracklist:
01. What I’ve Got In Mind (O´Dell) 2.49
02. Come Sundown (Kristofferson) 3.24
03. Mention A Mansion (Hupp/Morrison) 2.22
04. You’re Gonna Love Yourself (In The Morning) (Fritts) 3.07
05. Smoke, Smoke, Smoke (That Cigarette) (Travis/Williams) 3.03
06. Oh Lonesome Me (Gibson) 2.24
07. We Could Have Been Closest Of Friends (Pippin/Slade) 3.15
08. Hey Won’t You Play (Another Somebody Done Somebody Wrong Song) (Butler/Moman) 3.22
09. Please Don’t Tell Me How The Story Ends (Kristofferson) 3.26
10. The River’s Too Wide (Morrison) 2.43

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This is another item from the great greygoose record collection.
Thanks a lot !

Various Artists – Smoky Mountain Ballads (1976)

FrontCover1Let´s take a look to the roots of American Music.

In 1941. Smoky Mountain Ballads, a set of 78s selected and annotated with autobiographical notes by John A. Lomax, is published by RCA Victor. The album includes the Carter Family, Uncle Dave Macon, and the Monroe Brothers singing such songs as “East Virginia Blues,” “Worried Man Blues,” “Down in the Willow Garden,” and “Darling Corey,” which later became staples of the folk revival repertoire.

And we will hear Ballads from the Smoky Mountains:

The Great Smoky Mountains are a mountain range rising along the Tennessee–North Carolina border in the southeastern United States. They are a subrange of the Appalachian Mountains, and form part of the Blue Ridge Physiographic Province. The range is sometimes called the Smoky Mountains and the name is commonly shortened to the Smokies. The Great Smokies are best known as the home of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, which protects most of the range. The park was established in 1934, and, with over 9 million visits per year, it is the most-visited national park in the United States.

The Great Smokies are part of an International Biosphere Reserve. The range is home to an estimated 187,000 acres (76,000 ha) of old growth forest, constituting the largest such stand east of the Mississippi River. The cove hardwood forests in the range’s lower elevations are among the most diverse ecosystems in North America, and the Southern Appalachian spruce-fir forest that coats the range’s upper elevations is the largest of its kind. The Great Smokies are also home to the densest black bear population in the Eastern United States and the most diverse salamander population outside of the tropics.[

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Along with the Biosphere reserve, the Great Smokies have been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The U.S. National Park Service preserves and maintains 78 structures within the national park that were once part of the numerous small Appalachian communities scattered throughout the range’s river valleys and coves. The park contains five historic districts and nine individual listings on the National Register of Historic Places.

The name “Smoky” comes from the natural fog that often hangs over the range and presents as large smoke plumes from a distance. This fog is caused by the vegetation exhaling volatile organic compounds, chemicals that have a high vapor pressure and easily form vapors at normal temperature and pressure.
As a result of the 2016 Great Smoky Mountains wildfires, the Great Smoky Mountains have received international media coverage. (by wikipedia)

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Ballads from Smoky Mountains means Country,  Folk and Bluesgrass.songs.

And I´m impressed by the music, because the Music still sounds fresh and vital.

Listen to Chittlin’ Cookin’ Time In Cheatham County  … this could be a Ray Davies tune from the Sixties !

This is a very nice little collection of old Hillbilly folk tunes. Sounds like they are just recordings of old 78’s, but sound quality is as good as can be expected. (SchizoMelodies)

 

These recordings were originally released by RCA Victor in 1964 und a few Songs from this LP were re-released by Pickwick Records in 1976 …

Let´s discover this old fashioned music …

UncleDaveMaconUncle Dave Macon

Tracklist:
01. Uncle Dave Macon:  Cumberland Mountain Deer Race (Harris) 2.49
02. Wade Mainer, Zeke Morris & Steve Ledford: Riding On That Train Fourty-Five (Morris) 2.33
03. Dixon Bros.: Down With The Old Canoe (D.Dixon/H.Dixon) 2.51
04. Arthur Smith Trio: Chittlin’ Cookin’ Time In Cheatham County  (Arthur Smith Trio) 2.32
05. Monroe Bros.:  Where Is My Sailor Boy? (C.Monroe) 2.43
06. Carter Family:  Worried Man Blues (A.P.Carter) 2.46
07. J.E. Mainer’s Mountaineers:  On A Cold Winter Night (Mainer) 3.00
08. Uncle Dave Macon:  Railroadin’ And Gamblin’ (Macon) 2.39
09. Gid Tanner And His Skillet Lickers: Ida Red (unknown) 2.51

 

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Jim Baker – A Steel Guitar Christmas (1975)

frontcover1Baker was born July 26, 1933 in Eldridge, Ala. and grew up in Flint, Mich. He moved to Nashville in 1963 after serving in the U.S. Army. Baker was a steel guitar player as a youth and later played Dobro and pedal steel guitar in Nashville. He played the Grand Ole Opry throughout the early part of his career and was a member of the Mel Tillis Statesiders Band in the early 1970s. He played on numerous country albums and was in steady demand as a steel session player. Ernie Ashworth, Mel Tillis, Jim and Jessie, Bill Carlisle, Roy Drusky, Justin Tubb and Leroy Van Dyke were among the artists Baker played with.

Pedal steel player Jim Baker, 75, who played on the Grand Ole Opry and with Mel Tillis’ band died Oct. 5.2008 (by countrystandardtime.com)

This is his christmas album and this will be the last entry of christmas music this year !

Enjoy the beautiful sound of the steel-guitar !

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Personnel:
Kim Baker (steel-guitar)

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Tracklist:
01. White Christmas 2.15
02. Winter Wonderland 2.15
03. Blue Christmas 2.21
04. Christmas Song 2.03
05. Little Drummer Boy 2.00
06. O’ Little Town Of Bethlehem 2.49
07. Silver Bells 2.48
08. Silent Night 2.01
09. Christmas In My Hometown 2.00
10. Jingle Bell Rock 1.54
11. Here Comes Santa Clause 2.15
12. Rock Around The Christmas Tree 2.42

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Jann Browne – Count Me In (1995)

FrontCöver1Jann Browne (born March 14, 1954 in Anderson, Indiana) is an American country singer. She moved to South California in 1978 where she performed in a number of Orange County country bars.  From 1981 through 1983, before her solo career, she was a vocalist with the Western swing group Asleep at the Wheel. She has recorded four studio albums, and has charted three singles on the Hot Country Songs charts. Her highest single is the 1990s “Tell Me Why” at No. 18. She was named “Female Entertainer of the Year”, and her song “Louisville” was named “Song of the Year”, by the California Country Music Association. (by wikipedia)

Nine years ago when I bought this CD, I was disappointed and did not play it very much. But today I decided to play it again and see what I think. I am pleasantly surprized – I do not know what I was thinking of 9 years ago, but I really like it now. It could have been that since it did not come up to the high standard of Jann’s earlier releases – TELL ME WHY and IT ONLY HURTS WHEN I LAUGH – I wrote it off as a loser. I have completely changed my mind now.

JannBrowne01I think anyone who really likes Jann Browne will like this album, and I am now going to start playing it more. I see that some marketplace sellers have the album in the $6 range. If I did not already own it, I would pick it up in a second at this price.

Jann Browne is a fantastic traditional country artist, who never did get the credit she deserved. Part of the problem was the fact that when she came out with her music, Nashville wanted a more “Pop” sound, and Jann refused to change her style just to sell records. (by H. G. Milton)

This is Jann Browne’s least country-sounding record yet. Browne’s new record is still more country than a lot of what comes out of Music Row nowadays, but without neo-trad producer Steve Fishell behind the boards this time, Dennis Caplinger and Browne produced a record whose sound is always tasteful, but rarely engaging. While her first two albums supplemented her own songs with a healthy amount of well-chosen covers, Browne wrote or co-wrote every one of the 12 songs here, all of which are fine examples of neo-trad ’90’s country that could stand to dig a little deeper. It’s easy to admire Browne’s new songs – all are well-constructed and intelligently written .

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It’s also too easy to remain emotionally detached from them. Her vocals are as strong as ever (try imagining Emmylou Harris with a little more twang), and while a fair amount of the country grit has been washed from her sound, the accompaniment provides more than adequate support for the songs. They, however, contain too many generic rock gestures (“Hearts on the Blue Train,” “Ain’t No Promise” and the title track) and not enough of the deeply-felt honky-tonk soul that’s powered Browne’s best music. (by Don Yates)

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Personnel:
Matthew Barnes (guitar, background vocals)
Jann Browne (vocals)
Dennis Caplinger (guitar, mandolin, banjo, fiddle, viola, weissenborn)
Frank Cotinola (drums)
Chris Gaffney (accordion)
Pat Gallagher (acoustic guitar)
Rick MacDonald (guitar, penny whistle)
Jay Dee Maness (pedal steel guitar)
Wyman Reese (organ)
Keith Rosier (guitarron, bass)
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background vocals:
Rosie Flores – Herb Pedersen – Roger Stebner

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Tracklist:
01. Hearts On The Blue Train (Browne) 4.03
02. Ain’t No Promise (In The Promised Land) (Browne/Barnes) 4.00
03. I Have No Witness (Browne/Barnes) 5.27
04. Trouble’s Here (Browne) 3.05
05. Red Moon Over Lugano (Browne) 4.57
06. One Tired Man (Browne/Barnes) 5.09
07. Dear Loretta (Browne/Gallagher) 4.00
08. Count Me In (Browne/Barnes) 4.27
09. Baby Goodbye (Browne/Gallagher) 4.50
10. Long Time Gone (Browne/Barnes) 3.43
11. When The Darkest Hours Pass (Browne/Gallagher) 3.43
12. White Roses (Browne/Gallagher) 4.06

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